April 14, 2011

Knox on the Green Party

Jack Knox says that if the Green Party doesn’t win a seat in the next election then their supporters should join another party and “work for change within” (see the Edmonton Journal, April 10, 2011).  

I’ve been trying to work for change within the Liberal party since 2006 when I signed on as a Dion delegate and went to the party convention in Montreal.

I was pleased when Dion won and even more pleased when he introduced as part of his 2008 election platform a carbon tax—for me an essential requirement of any serious plan to combat the greatest issue facing the world.

Today, to my disappointment, the Liberals have abandoned the tax, opting instead for a vaguely defined cap-and-trade and “cleaner oil sands development.”

So when I read Mr. Knox suggesting that the greens should join another party and work for change within, if May loses, I say good luck. Five years of working within the Liberal Party on climate change has made me feel like I’m going backwards on the issue.

I suggest a different strategy.

To those who are currently working within the big three for an effective policy on climate change, I say vote green. It will propel the issue forward, dramatically. Elizabeth May and one or two other green candidates winning a seat in the next election would cause a seismic shift in how the other parties approach climate change. It would make all your working within worthwhile.

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